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Illumination

Audio Samples

>Traditional, American : La Chanson de Mardi Gras
>McGlynn, Michael : Siosuram so, for vocal ensemble
>Anonymous, French : Mignonne, allons voir si la rose
>McGlynn, Michael : Dormi Jesu, for vocal ensemble
>Traditional, English : Scarborough Fair
>McGlynn, Michael : Cunnla, for vocal ensemble & bodhran
>Traditional, English : Agincourt
>McGlynn, Michael : Illumination, for vocal ensemble
>Traditional, English : Greensleeves, folk song
>Cornysh, William : Ah Robyn, gentle Robyn
>Weatherly, Frederick E. : Danny Boy
>McGlynn, Michael : Summer Song, for vocal ensemble
>Traditional, Scottish : Fionnghuala
>McGlynn, Michael : My Songs Shall Rise, for vocal ensemble
>McGlynn, Michael : Fegaidh uaibh, for vocal ensemble & violin

Album Summary

>Traditional, American : La Chanson de Mardi Gras
>McGlynn, Michael : Siosuram so, for vocal ensemble
>Anonymous, French : Mignonne, allons voir si la rose
>McGlynn, Michael : Dormi Jesu, for vocal ensemble
>Traditional, English : Scarborough Fair
>McGlynn, Michael : Cunnla, for vocal ensemble & bodhran
>Traditional, English : Agincourt
>McGlynn, Michael : Illumination, for vocal ensemble
>Traditional, English : Greensleeves, folk song
>Cornysh, William : Ah Robyn, gentle Robyn
>Weatherly, Frederick E. : Danny Boy
>McGlynn, Michael : Summer Song, for vocal ensemble
>Traditional, Scottish : Fionnghuala
>McGlynn, Michael : My Songs Shall Rise, for vocal ensemble
>McGlynn, Michael : Fegaidh uaibh, for vocal ensemble & violin
Performers Conductor Ensemble
  • >
Composers
Notes & Reviews:

Recording information: 2010-2012.

One of the first things evident about Anúna's 2012 album, Illumination, released in celebration of the group's 25th anniversary, is the diversity of the music. Listeners who associate the ensemble only with Irish and Celtic music may be surprised to hear a healthy sampling of songs from American Cajun, French, English, and Scottish traditions. In fact, the album opens with an idiomatic, wildly energetic performance of a Cajun song, La Chanson de Mardi Gras, for solo, men's voices, and percussion. The diversity of musical styles on the album is a testimony to the versatility of Michael McGlynn, the group's founder, whose original compositions are featured on seven tracks and who is responsible for the arrangements of the other songs. McGlynn's original pieces, usually based on traditional texts, range in idiom from the directness of a folk song in Summer Song to a thoroughly modern but emotionally expressive style, with the use of extended vocal techniques and richly complex harmonies, in Fégaidh úaihb. One might reasonably experience the feeling that a commentator once described as "a frisson of concern" upon seeing that the album includes choral arrangements of Danny Boy, Greensleeves, and Scarborough Fair, songs that are done to death, often in mediocre arrangements and performances. McGlynn's arrangements manage to be both sophisticated and disarmingly simple, and in the singers' understated performances, make the songs fresh and thoroughly engaging.

The characteristics for which Anúna is known -- a warm, rich blend, immaculate intonation, infectious enthusiasm, and the ability to make music of sometimes daunting technical difficulty sound effortless and natural -- are all in place on the album. Stacie Lee Rossow, in her debut recording conducting the group, conveys a thorough understanding of the various musical styles and draws sensitive performances from the singers. Several songs have prominent parts for soloists, all of whom sing with purity and unmannered directness. John McGlynn's solo in Fionnghuala is different -- it's anything but simple -- and he sings it with dazzling virtuosity. The sound is clean, detailed, and warmly immediate.~Stephen Eddins



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Works Details

>Traditional, American : La Chanson de Mardi Gras
  • Performers: Andrew Hozier-Byrne (Voice); Noel Eccles (Percussion)
  • Conductor: Stacie Rossow
  • Running Time: 2 min. 12 sec.
  • Form: Vocal

>McGlynn, Michael : Siosúram só, for vocal ensemble
  • Performer: Lynn Hilary (Voice)
  • Conductor: Stacie Rossow
  • Running Time: 2 min. 58 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Vocal

>Anonymous, French : Mignonne, allons voir si la rose
  • Performers: Lynn Hilary (Descant); Michael McGlynn (Tenor); John McGlynn (Guitar)
  • Conductor: Stacie Rossow
  • Running Time: 3 min. 22 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Form: Vocal

>McGlynn, Michael : Dormi Jesu, for vocal ensemble
  • Performer: Lucy Champion (Soprano)
  • Conductor: Stacie Rossow
  • Running Time: 3 min. 56 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Vocal

>Traditional, English : Scarborough Fair
  • Performers: Tara McNeill (Violin); Andreja Malir (Harp); John McGlynn (Guitar)
  • Conductor: Stacie Rossow
  • Running Time: 3 min. 15 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: by 1673

>McGlynn, Michael : Cúnnla, for vocal ensemble & bodhran
  • Performers: Blathnaid Murphy (Voice); Padraig Dubhain (Bodhran)
  • Conductor: Stacie Rossow
  • Running Time: 1 min. 33 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Vocal

>Traditional, English : Agincourt
  • Performers: Rhonan Sugrue (Voice); Michael McGlynn (Tenor); Noel Eccles (Percussion)
  • Conductor: Stacie Rossow
  • Running Time: 3 min. 27 sec.

>McGlynn, Michael : Illumination, for vocal ensemble
  • Performer: Lucy Champion (Soprano)
  • Conductor: Stacie Rossow
  • Running Time: 3 min. 15 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Vocal

>Traditional, English : Greensleeves, folk song
  • Performers: Tara McNeill (Violin); Michael McGlynn (Tenor); Andreja Malir (Harp)
  • Conductor: Stacie Rossow
  • Notes: Composition written: 1600.
  • Running Time: 3 min. 19 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Form: Vocal
  • Written: 1600

>Cornysh, William : Ah Robyn, gentle Robyn
  • Performers: Tara McNeill (Voice); Lucy Champion (Soprano); Rachel Thompson (Voice)
  • Conductor: Stacie Rossow
  • Running Time: 3 min. 4 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance

>Weatherly, Frederick E. : Danny Boy
  • Conductor: Stacie Rossow
  • Running Time: 3 min. 47 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Form: Vocal

>McGlynn, Michael : Summer Song, for vocal ensemble
  • Performer: Lynn Hilary (Voice)
  • Conductor: Stacie Rossow
  • Running Time: 3 min. 6 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Vocal

>Traditional, Scottish : Fionnghuala
  • Performer: John McGlynn (Voice)
  • Conductor: Stacie Rossow
  • Running Time: 1 min. 33 sec.

>McGlynn, Michael : My Songs Shall Rise, for vocal ensemble
  • Performer: Rachel Thompson (Voice)
  • Conductor: Stacie Rossow
  • Running Time: 3 min. 21 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Vocal

>McGlynn, Michael : Fégaidh úaibh, for vocal ensemble & violin
  • Performers: Rachel Thompson (Voice); Hugo Leeney (Throat Singing); Tara McNeill (Violin)
  • Conductor: Stacie Rossow
  • Running Time: 4 min. 53 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Vocal